Reader letter: Our views count for nothing

Norwich Market. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Norwich Market. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

One reader believes the council's long document on the Greater Norwich Local Plan will only be read by a select few.

I have just attempted to contribute to the consultation on the Greater Norwich Local Plan (GNLP) by accessing the questionnaire on the internet.

Having just retired and reckoning I have at best only another 15 to 20 years of life available, I feel I cannot spare the necessary one to two days from those precious years to read the umpteen-page document and answer the inane questions.

Our local councils may think they are opening out their planning policies to the wider public and thereby enhancing democracy, as possibly our MPs intended when they formulated the Localism Act 2011.

I suspect they have achieved quite the reverse, as only a handful of people, councillors included, would ever bother to read the reams of meaningless guff which this document contains.

When our local healthcare facilities are being cut to the bone, it is bordering on criminal that someone has actually been paid (by us) to produce this massive and incomprehensible document.

Still more outrageous, even if most Norfolk citizens had the fortitude to read, digest and respond to the document, it is clear their views count for nought.

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Witness the decision by the planning inspectors to allow a large housing development in Mattishall, against the opinion of the local MP, district council and the neighbourhood plan, drafted at much expense and effort by local people.

It would be more efficient, and more honest, if our central government were to tell us straight they will do what the hell they want, irrespective of what anyone else thinks.

At least we could avoid spending hours of effort being 'consulted' and then summarily dismissed.

Do you agree with Richard? Let us know in the comments below.